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Promoting healthy gender relationships in secondary schools through a mixed netball competition
conference contributionposted on 15.06.2020, 00:00 by S Parker, C Gunther, Tafadzwa Nyanhanda
Context: Gender-based violence is a widespread problem with significant impacts. Young people are identified as a priority group: as targets for change, and agents of change in violence prevention strategies. By increasing knowledge; providing opportunities to discuss issues in a supportive environment; challenging attitudes about roles and expectations; and providing skills to challenge sexism, harassment, and gender-based discrimination; we hope to prevent gender-based violence. Objectives: • Increase adolescent awareness to recognise the early warning signs of relationship and gender-based violence and the multiple factors that enable it; • Provide students the opportunity to practice and implement skills to take bystander action to prevent or intercede in situations of relationship and gender-based violence Process: Students participated in workshops exploring consent, gender equity, the role of the bystander and the impact of attitudes and behaviours on enabling or preventing the incidence of gender-based violence. These workshops were followed by a mixed round robin netball competition. Analysis: Interviews and surveys were conducted to measure baseline of students’ knowledge and confidence to intervene and impact of the workshops and netball competition. Outcomes: 75 surveys were completed. 66.2% reported learning about early signs of unhealthy relationships. 55.6% would only act if it was safe to. Some participants were unable to transfer class-based learning to the netball competition. Evidence showed students were surprised and strongly impacted by the data provided. Presumptions cannot be made that information is available and known to most. Efforts to raise awareness of the statistics on violence against women needs to continue.